While there are many people that likely saw this news coming, it is still a little bit surprising to report it now given the timing: Chevy Chase is done with “Community.” Multiple sources are confirming that Sony Pictures TV, NBC, and the actor have made the mutual decision to part ways, and that his exit from the show is effective immediately.
Now, let’s turn for a minute to what makes this news a little bit unusual. As we reported recently, “Community” season 4 is in the process of shooting its finale (which could also double as the show’s last episode). However, this installment was shot out of sequence, and there are two more episodes that technically still need to be filmed in order for the 13-episode run to be complete. This means that Pierce Hawthorne is somehow going to be absent from two episodes before returning to the finale, and it’s unclear at this moment if this was a long-term plan, or something that happened spur of the moment.
Chase’s antics on the “Community” set are at this point well-documented. During filming for season 3 he famously referred to sitcoms as the lowest form of comedy, and he also had a nasty argument with creator Dan Harmon that grew even nastier when Harmon played the voicemail for fans to heart at a comedy event. Even following Dan’s exit from the show over the summer, Chase was the subject of headlines earlier this year when making race-related remarks that many members of the cast and crew found offensive. He later apologized for the incident, saying that he was trying to explain his displeasure over his character being racist.
Do you think that Chase signing off the show at this point is the right thing, especially if there is hope of a happier, drama-free season 5?